Catfish Drop Season Opener

O’Fallon, Mo., June 1 – The Cape Girardeau Catfish dropped their 2022 season opener to the O’Fallon Hoots on the road Wednesday night, 10-5.

Cape pulled to within one run in the third inning on the strength of a two-run homer by second baseman J.D. Ortiz. Ortiz is entering his senior year at SIU-Carbondale where he is a member of the Salukis baseball team. (He is the son of former MLB player Jose Ortiz who played with the Oakland Athletics and Colorado Rockies from 2000-2002 followed by 11 years of professional baseball in Japan.)

The Hoots added four runs in the bottom of the third followed by single tallies in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings.

The Hoots capitalized on five Catfish errors and swiped eight bases, including home in the first inning, while outhitting the Catfish 12 to 9. However, only one of the Hoots’ hits went for extra bases, a double by designated hitter Jacob Hager, who also had two stolen bases.

The Catfish scored an unearned run on a passed ball in the sixth inning and two runs in the seventh, one on an error and the other on an RBI single to center field by catcher Andrew Sharp.

Catfish starting pitcher Griffin Lohman took the loss, facing 17 batters in 2 2/3 innings, allowing six hits and seven runs, five of which were earned, while walking two and striking out three Hoots.

Asked his impressions of his squad’s first game, Catfish head coach Stephen Larkin said, “We just have to play better defense…and we will.”